'Funky, Like A Blue Cheese': Derek Lau Explains The Appeal Of A Century Egg
While most consider century eggs a delicacy, the final four teams on 'The Amazing Race' would probably tell you otherwise.
The first challenge of Grand Finale Week finds Jasmin and Jerome, Tim and Rod, Joey and Viv, and Tom and Tyler rushing through Bangkok's Khlong Toei Market to find "three treats" they'll have to consume to receive their next clue.
While the brightly coloured eggs they find look like confectionary at first, they're soon cracked open and revealed to be century eggs in disguise -- chicken, duck or quail eggs that have been preserved in a solution, usually made up of clay and salt.
And, without spoiling the episode, we're here to tell you that the teams weren't exactly thrilled about their mid-morning snack.
While it might be jarring to see a food item that's normally white and bright yellow take on a black and green hue, we can confirm they're DELICIOUS and are an absolute treat if you eat them properly.
And that, despite the name, the eggs haven't been hanging around in someone's pantry for a hundred years, they're normally stored from anywhere between a few weeks and a few months.
We gave 'MasterChef' season 11 alum Derek Lau a call to help us explain the appeal of the snack that originated in China around the time of the Ming dynasty.
Derek told 10 daily that he used to turn his nose up at century eggs during his childhood but has since embraced the dish in all its forms.
"When I was a kid, I didn’t hate it, I just thought it looked disgusting, it smelled disgusting," he told 10 daily via phone.
"It’s one of those things where it really doesn’t look very appetising. When you crack it, it’s kind of green inside, like a little bit gooey but you’ve just got to get yourself over that -- it’s like a nice cheese," he said.
If you've never tried a century egg before and are a little unsure about cracking one open and taking a big bite, Derek said it's important to pair the delicacy with the right ingredients.
"My favourite thing to have it in is congee or Chinese porridge," Derek said.
"It’s probably the easiest way to introduce yourself to a century egg because some of the flavour gets a little bit masked by the porridge -- it’s pungent but it’s creamy."
Derek suggested that another great way to eat the preserved egg is "on top of tofu with spring onions, soy, vinegar and sesame oil".
We're going to give 'The Amazing Race' teams a pass because shovelling century eggs into your mouth in a competitive environment in the pouring rain doesn't sound like much fun -- but we're sure they'd give it another crack with some nice, warm congee?
Either way, Derek told 10 daily he'd be up for the challenge, explaining he could probably put away "10-15 in five minutes" and goodness, if we ever get to witness that on TV, he might just claim an honorary [Century] Egg Boy title.
Main Image: Network 10.